Archive for category Indians

Just what Malaysia needs: Another minister

Jacob Sinnathamby
The Malaysian Insider
Jul 30, 2011

JULY 30 – I hate to spoil the party but the last thing this country needs is another minister.

In fact, what we need is not quantity but quality. The last couple of months has shown up the inadequacies and incompetence of a number of ministers and exposed the paucity of talent in the Cabinet.

We have a Home Minister who did not know that EU citizens do not need a tourist visa (French lawyer Michael Bourdon had to educate him); a de facto Law Minister who misinterpreted a key fact in the Teoh Beng Hock Royal Commission of Inquiry and a Defence Minister who sounds shaky whenever he speaks.

And I have not even touched on the Agriculture Minister, Unity Minister, etc. Read the rest of this entry »


Maybe the ‘mamak’ leaders can help Indians?

Mohd Ariff Sabri Aziz | May 31, 2011

Free Malaysia Today

Its perhaps time for Malaysian Indians to emulate their Chinese brethrens and dump MIC.


The Malaysian Indians should emulate their spirited Chinese brothers. Once a leading member of the Chinese business community declared that the Chinese don’t need Chinese politicians and ministers to represent them.

That statement sapped the smugness off the MCA. Really, Indians too don’t need to be representation by the MIC.

Maybe they can do so through Nor Mohamad Yakob, Naina Merican, Azeez Rahim, Zambry Kadir?

They too can also talk direct to Malay leaders the way the Chinese do.

Just see how Tony Fernandes (AirAsia) does it and Ananda Krishna (Measat) seems to know how to do it. So to does Ravi Menon (Ara Corporation), Arumugam and G.Gnalingam (Westport). Even the one time driver Kenneth Eswaran (Maicci president) knows how too.

They ALL know how to talk to Malay leaders. So, forget MIC and forget its president G Palanivel. Read the rest of this entry »


‘Beng Hock and Interlok will not derail BN’s target’

by Regina Lee
Jan 22, 11

Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin is unfazed by the opposition’s attempts to raise the issues of Teoh Beng Hock’s death and the controversial textbook ‘Interlok’ at the Jan 30 by-election in Tenang.

Muhyiddin said he is confident that it will not dent the BN’s efforts to regain the 5,000-vote majority it had at the 2004 general election.

The BN’s by-election commander-in-chief said the opposition would be hard pressed in finding real issues during the contest, and would thus resort to spreading lies.

“There are not many issues in Tenang. The land demands by the second generation of Felda settlers is being considered by the government,” said Muhyiddin during a press conference after this morning’s nominations.

“In any by-election, there will always be new issues repeatedly played up by the opposition. They will look for one or create one that includes lies and slander.

“Although I don’t think it will effect us but we cannot keep quiet. If they make false statements, we will have to explain ourselves, lest the voters believe them,” he said when asked about Teoh Beng Hock and the novel ‘Interlok’. Read the rest of this entry »


Thank Malaysian Indians for nation-building with deeds in the country by ending their marginalization and status as the new underclass and not go to Chennai to make beautiful-sounding but meaningless tribute

I was flabbergasted by the Bernama report yesterday of what the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak said in Chennai on Friday, as follows:

January 23, 2010 18:48 PM
Najib Visits Chennai To Thank Malaysian Indians For Nation-Building
By P. Vijian

CHENNAI, Jan 23 (Bernama) — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak, who made a historic trip to Chennai, said it was to honour Malaysian Indians as a vast majority had cultural bonds with Tamil Nadu from where they originated.

“My trip ends in Chennai, it is not coincidental but intentional because Chennai, Tamil Nadu is the original state where many Malaysian Indians originated from.
Read the rest of this entry »


Sinking in solidarity with Samy

By Martin Jalleh
7 Oct. 2009

Samy Vellu is here to stay – as long as he wants. He has been made indispensable, invincible…even immortal. He will remain as the “Saviour” of the Indians in Malaysia – a god-like status his “devotees” have strenuously bestowed upon him.

This strong message that Samy still reigns supreme was delivered by the majority of the 1,464 delegates at the triennial election of the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) held recently. It appears that they would prefer to sink with Samy – rather than swim in the current of change.

Dr M says “MIC is scared stiff of Samy Vellu”. But it is their very own political survival they are shivering and sweating over! Ironically, they felt very secure even if it meant strengthening Samy’s political stranglehold and further suffocating the whole Indian community!

With their future at stake the delegates were not prepared to stick their necks out. In fact, as Dr M once described the members of the MIC, they are “not even ready to stick their little finger out”. Such is the sordid state of affairs in the second oldest political party in the country.

“Everybody is playing safe. If I go against the chief, he’s going to hammer me. Then I won’t get contracts, I won’t be ‘ketua bahagian’ (party division chief),” Dr M succinctly described the sad scenario – which was very similar to Umno when Dr M was its president for 22 years. Read the rest of this entry »


The 30 votes that changed Samy Vellu/MIC history?

26-vote margin still fresh in my mind, says Subra
The Star
Wednesday September 9, 2009

PETALING JAYA: Datuk S. Subramaniam has hit out at his nemesis MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu for claiming that the 30 “pocketed votes” in the 1977 party elections was an impossibility.

The former party deputy president also brushed off Samy Vellu’s claim that he and Datuk V. Govindaraj were “pathological liars”.

“Govindaraj told me he did it. He was Samy Vellu’s man and led his campaign then.

“I can’t recall off-hand the total number of votes cast in 1977 but I know that the difference was 26. That is still fresh in my mind.”

Govindaraj told an English daily recently that he took the 30 votes cast for Subramaniam during the party polls that saw Samy Vellu defeating Subramaniam for the deputy president’s post by a mere 26 votes. Read the rest of this entry »


Remove restrictive ISA release conditions, lift ban on Hindraf and appoint Uthayakumar as member of Royal Commission of Inquiry into marginalisation of Malaysian Indians

I am calling this media conference on the release of the three Hindraf leaders, P. Uthayakumar, DAP Selangor Assemblyman for Kota Alam Shah M. Manoharan and K. Vasanthakumar from Kamunting Detention Centre under the Internal Security Act (ISA) two hours ago.

The formation of Hindraf, the arbitrary, undemocratic and unjust detention of the five Hindraf leaders in December and the Makkal Sakti phenomenon were important factors resulting in the March 8 “political tsunami” in last year’s general election.

The time has come for the Barisan Nasional government not just to release the three remaining Hindraf leaders under the ISA today but to come to terms and address the root causes for the alienation and marginalisation of the Indian community in the country after half-a-century of nationhood.

Neither the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak nor the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein should entertain any notion that the Malaysian Indians should “membalas budi” for the release of the Hindraf leaders, as they should not be detained without trial under the ISA in the first place.

To realistically and boldly address the root causes of the Hindraf and Makkal
Sakti phenomena, I call on Najib to implement three measures: Read the rest of this entry »


MINDRAF: Does Malaysia Need Another Sectarian Political Party?

By Farish A. Noor

As if the political landscape of Malaysia wasn’t overcrowded already, there has come into the fray yet another sectarian community-based party, Mindraf (Malaysian Indian Democratic Action Front). Ostensibly set up by ‘good samaritans’ concerned about the plight of their community, Mindraf has announced its political ambitions with the aim of representing Malaysian citizens of South Asian origin.

Now allow me to be blunt here: In the opinion of this writer, Malaysia does not need another communitarian party that caters to the primary concerns of a particular ethnic or religious community. We are already forced to work on a contested landscape where there are too many parties that are based on ethnic and religious loyalties, and yet another sectarian party will hardly bring us any closer to realising the notion of a Malaysia where identity is based on universal citizenship and equal rights.

If anything, the tendency of such sectarian parties is to further add to the process of divide and rule and to further entrench sedimented notions of ethnic-racial differences. This comes at a time when a younger generation of Malaysians have demonstrated their ability to transcend the ethnic divisions that once haunted the generation of their parents. So while we hope and pray for a better, more united and colour-blind Malaysia, whose idea was it to create another ethnic-based party? Read the rest of this entry »


Ai-yo-yo Samy

Nobody would have been surprised by the following newsflash:

Samy Vellu retains MIC president’s post uncontested

KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu retained the post of MIC president uncontested for the 11th consecutive term at the close of the party’s presidential nomination in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday, according to sources.

The nomination papers of his challenger Datuk M. Muthupalaniappan were rejected.


ISA release of Hindraf 5 – test whether Najib will be PM for all Malaysians

I was interviewed by Australian Broadcasting Corporation this morning on the recent BBC interview of Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak who said that he will do more to address the grievances of minority groups when he becomes Prime Minister in March.

Najib acknowledged that Malaysian voters would want to see changes when he took office and that he needed to regain the trust of non-Malays in particular.

He promised “further measures to tackle the problems of the ethnic Indian minority” but “warned that the Hindu activist network, Hindraf, which has organised large public protests, has complicated attempts to tackle the problems of ethnic Indians”. Read the rest of this entry »


Syed Hamid Albar vs. Hindraf on Indian marginalization

by H Lee

So Home Minister Syed Hamid Albar – in a decision, as he puts it, of self-sacrifice for the sake of protecting society – has banned Hindraf.

Similar home ministerial valour must have been present when he chose to detain Raja Petra, Teresa Kok, Tan Hoon Cheng and hundreds of others under the ISA.

Many Malaysians have expressed their outrage at the latest cruel and callous act of repression against a civil group which has highlighted the continuing plight of marginalised Malaysian Indians.

I would like to examine an aspect: the assertion that Malaysian Indians are not marginalised and are actually doing better than Bumiputera Malaysians, and thus, they have no grounds to feel
aggrieved, let alone angry. This is a cynical and specious claim.

We should first take note of the often ignored fact that the Malaysian Indian community is diverse, stratified and complex. Like any other. Read the rest of this entry »


Deepavali greetings – 3 Makkal Sakti wishes

Deepavali wishes to Hindu Malaysians and all Malaysians – Makkal Sakti so that good can triumph over evil in our motherland.

For the second consecutive year, Malaysian Hindus as well as Malaysians generally will be celebrating Deepavali in a somber mood.

Malaysian Deepavali this year has again made international news particularly in India over the arrest and release of P Vwaishhnnavi, the six-year-old niece of detained Hindraf leader P Uthayakumar, her mother K Shanti, as well as the Deepavali-eve release on bail of ten persons after two days in police custody, over Vwaishhnnavi’s attempt on Friday to submit a letter to the Prime Minister in Putrajaya appealing for the release of the five Hindraf leaders under the Internal Security Act (ISA).

Malaysian Home Minister, Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar cannot be more wrong when he said in a recent Malaysiakini interview that he has got the support of peace-loving members of the Indian community for the government’s ban on Hindraf. Read the rest of this entry »


Tamil Makkalosai suspended for a week – beginning of crackdown post-March 8?

Popular Tamil daily, Tamil Makkalosai, has been suspended for a week by none other than the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar himself for giving too much coverage of Pakatan Rakyat news.

With immediate effect, Tamil Makkalosai will not appear in the streets until next week, awaiting the fate of its appeal to the Home Minister.

Is this the first sign of repression and crackdown on human rights and the little space opening up in the printed media after the March 8 “political tsunami”?

It is clear that the decision to stop the publication of Tamil Makkalosai, which is still awaiting for its KDN this year, has got the “green-light” from the Cabinet meeting this morning.

Why did the Ministers, particularly from Umno and other Barisan Nasional component parties, particularly from the MIC, who have promised to end their subsidiary and subservient role in Cabinet , agreed to such a repressive measure as to immediately close down Tamil Makkalosai?


Samy Vellu’s days are numbered – Subra as next MIC leader

Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu has become the most unpopular politician in the country and probably in Malaysian history, being booed, jeered, car blocked, thrown stones, rotten eggs and even slippers almost every day in public places.

This public rejection of Samy Vellu has spread to MIC and Barisan Nasional (BN) functions, with other MIC and BN leaders becoming also the target of public resentment and fury, as illustrated by the meet-the-people session led by Perak Mentri Besar and Barisan Nasional chief Datuk Seri Mohamad Tajol Rosli Ghazali in Buntong, Ipoh yesterday.

The political days of Samy Vellu, MIC President and sole Indian Cabinet Minister for over 28 years, are numbered. Moves in fact are afoot for the former deputy president, Datuk S. Subramaniam, to become the next MIC leader as Samy Vellu is slowly phased out of the political scene.

I expect Subra to make a political comeback on Sunday on his nomination as a Barisan Nasional candidate for the 12th general election and preparatory to his joining the Cabinet – something Subra had been denied and been waiting for nearly three decades. Read the rest of this entry »


Freedom of the press

By Ishwar Nahappan

Dr Mahathir thrust a deep dagger into the heart of fundamental and civil liberties of Malaysia. This is the legacy that he will be known best for. Progressively under his rule the concept of “Free and Fair” elections were thrown out of the window.

The expression “Free and Fair” incorporates many underlying principles including legal, ethical, and internationally accepted historical conventions. It does not just mean the freedom to vote. An open free press to express its views without duress and manipulation is a fundamental liberty which is the absolute right of ALL MALAYSIANS OF ALL RACES.

The newspapers and visual media (government controlled) are blanketed and filled with goodies and ang pows from the barisan government and all opposition activities are blocked and blacked out by a pliant press and media under the control and ownership of the constituent parties of barisan. UMNO or UMNO members control the New Straits Times, Berita Harian, The Malay Mail, the Utusan, etc. MCA control the Star and Nanyang Siang Pow and Datuk Samy Vellu’s personal family members control the Tamil Nesan.

Freedom of the press in Malaysia is like a wayang kulit, now you see it now you don’t. Or a water tap which can be turned on and off or reduced to a trickle whenever the government so chooses.

The press deliberately ignores:

• Any mention by the opposition of continuing breaches of civil liberties, the incidents of endemic corruption, acts of wasteful expenditure, the list could go on and on but I will save that for another day.

• It now appears that Bukit Bintang has 5,000 new postal voters who have suddenly appeared without any logical or legitimate rhyme or reason. One should ask WHY and the reason being is to neutralise one community’s voting strength.

• The leadership of the MIC is fast losing any residual credibility with the Indian community. Its great leader Datuk Samy Vellu has been harassed on two occasions in the last few days and just yesterday with eggs and slippers. Consequently more and more Indians are joining the DAP, totally frustrated with Samy Vellu’s self-centered and self-aggrandizing leadership. Last Thursday evening, at a dinner I hosted in Klang, 250 ordinary Indians, many of them from the MIC openly joined the DAP.

• Samy Vellu can’t even speak out and on behalf of 300 men, women and children who were demonstrating peacefully and calling them criminal to boot. Perhaps he should look at a mirror himself and adjust his coiffeur (hairdo), it might help him see things more clearly. A meaningful response to this horrendous act by the police was made by Datuk Anwar yesterday. His speech was reported in The New Paper.

Fortunately for us today and what makes this election a watershed is the power of electronic media communication both through the internet and the sms. The Thaipusam celebration which was boycotted by the Indian community at large resulted in the number of devotees visiting Batu Caves reducing to a generous estimate of approximately 250,000 people as opposed to the usual 800,000 – 1 million people. Samy’s days are numbered. It could not happen sooner. He will be the fourth of a pack of rotten apples who came to power in the seventies who so spoiled Malaysia. I wish him a peaceful retirement.


Samy Vellu should apologise to ISA detainees and peaceful demonstrators for equating them as “criminals”

MIC President and the sole Malaysian Indian Cabinet Minister for over 28 years, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu has become the most unpopular Malaysian Indian leader in the country, being booed and jeered almost daily by the Malaysian Indians in the country.

Last night, as reported by the press, Samy Vellu was again the target of boos and jeers by Indian crowds in Prai, Penang. This is the New Sunday Times report: “Mob jeers Samy Vellu, blocks his car”:

BUTTERWORTH: MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu went through a harrowing experience last night when some 100 people blocked his car and demanded the release of Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) protesters detained at an illegal rally in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

The crowd surrounded and banged his car as he was leaving SRJK (C) Chung Hwa 3 in Prai here after attending a function at 9pm.

The works minister was earlier escorted to the car after a mob started to jeer him. Read the rest of this entry »


Samy Vellu “lost his marbles” over Ishwar joining DAP

MIC President and the sole Malaysian Indian Cabinet Minister, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu seems to have “lost his marbles” (to do something senseless or stupid) making him to publicly declare “DAP telah mati”.

I don’t ordinarily watch television news but last night I caught a snippet of television news and saw Samy Vellu in a rampage against the DAP with the ultimate swear term: “DAP telah mati”.

DAP has been active, productive and vibrant for 42 years in Malaysian politics and is looking forward to the “battle of the century” in the upcoming general election. DAP will not die just because Samy Vellu wishes so.

What I am more concerned is how the longest-serving Cabinet Minister in Malaysia could so embarrass himself as to make a fool and public spectacle of himself over national television with such intemperate language and conduct.

Samy Velllu has never been under greater pressure as he is fighting for his political life.

The last straw must be Sunday’s announcement by the bearer of one of the most illustrious names in MIC history, more famous than the name of Samy Vellum, Ishwar Nahappan, joining the ranks of the DAP. Read the rest of this entry »


Tribute to Athi Nahappan and Janaki

(Media Conference Statement welcoming Ishwar Nahappan as the latest member for DAP in Penang on Sunday 10.2.08)

Let me introduce Ishwar Nahappan, who has taken the momentous step to join the DAP.

But let me say a few words about his parents, TAN SRI and PUAN SRI ATHI NAHAPPAN who were instrumental in the formation of the MIC and who independently contributed much to our country.

Athi Nahappan has an honoured and unblemished name in the annals of Malaysian history, and among his most famous contributions to Malaysia is the report bearing his name, the Athi Nahappan Report on Local Government where he called for restoration of local government elections.

In 1974 , Athi Nahappan , who was then the deputy president of MIC , was appointed deputy minister for law by TUN Abdul Razak (the father of Dato Najib Razak). In March 1976 TUN Hussein Onn (the father of DATO Hisamuddin ) appointed Dato Nahappan as the second cabinet minister representing the MIC – Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of law and justice portfolios.

Tragically , just two months after his appointment as full minister , DATO Athi Nahappan died of a sudden heart attack while he was personally addressing a dinner gathering held in his honor by over a 1000 MIC members and other leading Malaysian Indians from all over the country.

Athi Nahappan was a totally self made man who came to Penang at the age of 9, alone with his father, not knowing a word of English or Malay. Read the rest of this entry »


Ishwar Nahappan joins DAP

(Media Conference Statement by Ishwar Nahappan on joining the DAP in Penang on Sunday, 10th February 2008 at 10.30 am)

My father Tan Sri Athi Nahappan died 32 years ago . On April 4th 1976 , one month before he died he made a speech at a dinner in his honor by the Penang State MIC at Wisma Perseketuan .

Let me read you a paragraph from his speech .

“The Government is now concerned with the eradication of poverty of all the races. This will be emphasized in our 3rd Malaysia Plan .

“Poverty is to be found in every community. In solving poverty we should not think of Malay poverty, Chinese poverty or Indian poverty. There can only be one poverty and that is NATIONAL POVERTY which must be solved regardless of race. I am aware that the Prime Minister (Tun Hussein Onn) is determined to eliminate the poverty of the nation as a whole. The answer to poverty is the equal distribution of opportunities, income and wealth. The MIC is determined to work with the govt to ensure that this will happen.”

A few weeks ago Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi said “There are not just poor Indians, but also poor Chinese, Malays and other Bumiputras as well. This is why eradicating poverty among Malaysians, and I stress the word Malaysians, has been on our agenda and remains one of our priorities.”

Ladies and gentleman, what Prime Minister Badawi said was first mentioned by my father 32 years ago. Obviously, nothing has changed and the Barisan government continues to make empty promises.

Events of recent months have clearly shown that the MIC leadership has dismally failed in their duty to ensure that the Indian community has had equal opportunities or equal distribution of wealth and income as outlined by my father in 1976. In fact, the MIC has totally neglected to address the desperate conditions faced by large sections of the Malaysian Indian community. This transcends every facet of human life and endeavor.

Whether it is in EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION, HOUSING, CORPORATE WEALTH or simply EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES, the Indian Community as a whole has fallen behind and missed out these last 28 years. Let me give you some facts. Read the rest of this entry »


Najib apology on demolition of Hindu temple on Deepavali eve – six more apologies by Umno/MIC leaders awaited

The front-page headline of the night edition of China Press is “Najib apology – demolition of Hindu temple on Deepavali eve”.

This is a manifestation of Makkal Sakti (People’s Power) but it is a grave error for the Barisan Nasional and MIC leadership to think that such an apology is acceptable or satisfactory answer to the Malaysian Indian political awakening and uprising following the seminal 30,000-people Hindraf protest in Kuala Lumpur on Nov. 25 last year.

If Najib and the top Umno leadership are serious in wanting to making amends for the long-standing political, economic, educational, social, cultural religious polarization of the Malaysian Indians resulting in their becoming the new underclass in the country, Najib’s apology must be followed by at least six other apologies and ensuing actions, such as:

• Apology by Selangor Mentri Besar, Datuk Seri Khir Toyo as the No. 1 man in the Selangor state government who must bear full responsibility for the demolition of the Hindu temple in Shah Alam on Deepavali eve;

• Apology by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi for Umno insensitivity in holding the Umno General Assembly last year on the day of Deepavali – when it would be regarded as highly insensitive and offensive if MIC, MCA or Gerakan had held their national delegates meeting on Hari Raya Aidilfitri for instance.

• Apology by the Umno Youth deputy chief, Khairy Jamaluddin, the Prime Minister’s son-in-law in publicly castigating the Indian news vendors for “anti-national” actions in having a press holiday when the Umno general assembly was being held resulting in the policy speech of the Prime Minister and Umno President at the Umno general assembly not given coverage the next day – when it was the fault of Umno in fixing its general assembly on Deepevali, long a press holiday.

• Apology by MIC President and sole Indian Cabinet Minister for over 28 years in refusing to admit the fact of the marginalization of the Malaysian Indians – a stand which he reiterated during his recent visit to India;

• Apology by Abdullah for the detention of the five Hindraf leaders under the Internal Security Act for fighting the cause to end the marginalization of the Malaysian Indians – and the five should be released immediately and unconditionally.

• Apology by Samy Vellu for the 20-year-long Maika Telekom Shares hijacking scandal in betraying the rights and interests of Malaysian Indians who had put their trust in him by placing their life-savings in Maika shares.

Are these six apologies from the UMNO and MIC leaders forthcoming to demonstrate that there is now a genuine change of heart in the top Umno leadership to meaningfully end the marginalization of the Malaysian Indians in the country?

(Speech at the DAP ceramah in Buntong, (Ipoh Barat) on Sunday, 3rd February 2008 at 10 pm)